San Francisco’s Board Passes Bottled Water Ban

We’d written about this a little ways back, but San Francisco has moved forward towards banning the sale of bottled water on city property with the vote passing the Board of Supervisors.

California has long set trends on regulatory guidelines for the rest of the country and it is our unofficial position that this one qualifies as goofy at best.

I’m not 100% sure that chlorinated tap water is an alternative to purified water.  The counterpoint from the bottled water groups was pretty fair.  Why are we encouraging soft drinks? That’s the replacement product.

Yes, plastic water bottles are incredibly wasteful.  There is no reason that we should be dumping those in landfills.   Let’s agree to that central premise.

Realistically, where do we spend our time?  Is it the handful of festivals we attend or the other 360 days a year that we’re at home that matters?  If we’re trying to discourage waste, an emphasis on festivals misses the main point.

Look at Chicago’s tax.  They have a $0.10 tax on the plastic bottles.  It, and complimenting Chicago hurts to do, makes more sense.   Cities are not obligated under EPA guidelines to provide reverse osmosis quality water to every tap and they shouldn’t be required to do so.  It’s not economically feasible nor would piping Kinetico-quality water through 100-year old mains even work.

If you’re looking for quality drinking water, it is always going to be a point-of-use decision.  That’s the entire point of a reverse-osmosis system.

California has done wise things in the past in terms of conservation when it comes to water.  They led the nation towards water softener efficiency standards and those were smart moves.  I’m struggling to see how I could put this ban in the same category.

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